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13 years of AMD loyalty being questioned

Discussion in 'System Builder's Advice' started by xvi, Nov 26, 2011.

  1. xvi

    xvi

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    K6-2 450, Athlon XP 2000+, Sempron 3000+, Sempron 64 3400+, AMD Athlon X2 4400+, AMD Phenom II X2 550. That is my AMD heritage and this is an over-analyzed review of the i7s.

    I've been wanting to give sig rig to my father (Socket A Athlon XP 3000+) and move up to the 8150. Despite the lackluster results, I figured the new instruction sets, thread optimizations (Win 8) and overclockability would make up for it. I truly wanted to believe and tried to justify the purchase any way I could. The most helpful review I found was one I found on Hardcoreware.net, specifically the page on OpenCL performance and on Audio/Video Performance since those are two little extras I feel that I'd like to have available.

    Important features to me are gaming performance, folding/crunching, video editing and encoding, file compression/decompression, having all the fancy features/instruction sets, being "future-proof" and a having a generally nice price/performance (value) in all categories.

    Just so I didn't feel like I was missing anything, I started comparing features to similarly priced Intel products. I was surprised to find the Z68 boards were about the same price as 990FX boards and that they featured things like PCIe 3.0 and UEFI (which satisfies "future-proof" and geeky bragging).

    General questions:
    Is there any difference between the 2600k and the 2700k besides 100Mhz and a price bump?
    Is overclocking generally pretty straightforward like it is for AMD?
    The difference between the 2500k and 2600k is HyperThreading (and MHz), correct? Will I see any more than 20-30% increase per clock than I've found in the charts below? If the 2600k isn't that much better than the 2500k, am I an idiot for wanting one anyways? It feels more future-proof and appeals to my wanting as many cores as possible (even if they're just HT).
    Any tips and tricks I should know before buying?
    Should I go for the 1100t and wait for Ivy Bridge?

    Price options:
    X6 1100t and mid-range AM3 board: ~$250
    Would give me a processor that should sell easily if I decide to upgrade later, but makes me uncomfortable in the sense that it's a rather temporary fix. Fits in to my lackluster budget.

    FX 8150 and 990FX: ~$445
    The processor I wish was either faster or cheaper. Features are mostly there, price/performance (value) isn't. If the 6GHz average OC is true, this would give the best performance out of the bunch. Reviewers are saying 5GHz on water. That's enough to make the FX a bit competitive.

    2500k and Z68: ~$400
    Cheaper than the FX 8150, generally faster, but lacks the future-proof comfort I get from the 2600k's HyperThreading.

    2600k and Z68: ~$510
    Feels like it would last longer. Feels more "comfortable" from a hardware standpoint, but it's a bit more than I want to spend. I would expect closer to $450. The processor alone costs 53% more for 30% more performance, but if you include the motherboard in the price, it only costs 28% more (which sits right with the 20-30% performance increase).

    I've made a rough chart comparing price/performance, efficiency, etc. I should note that most 2700k benchmarks are estimates based off of a 100MHz bump and that the price/performance for the 1100T is based off of an $80 motherboard since I would most likely reuse my 790FX and buy a cheap mobo for my X2.
    [​IMG]

    Sources:
    PassMark CPU, CPUbenchmark.net
    OpenCL and x264, Hardcoreware.net
    7-zip, AnandTech.com
    Average OC, HWBot.org (I will adjust with some slightly more confirmed/typical OC results later.)

    Estimated motherboard prices:
    X6 1100t: $80 (Mid-range board)
    FX 8150: $175 (Asus something-or-other)
    2500k: $190 (Asus P8Z68-V/GEN3)
    2600k: $190 (Asus P8Z68-V/GEN3)


    To-Do:
    Add $100 to total price in overclocked section (for cheap watercooling kit).
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2011
    Crunching for Team TPU
  2. Outback Bronze

    Outback Bronze

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    13 years ey. I havent gone 1 day! Only amd cards i suppose. Anyway id go the i7 2600k mate. Just the best cpu youll get for all your gaming, encoding or crunching needs at a fair price(2700k debatable). Overclocking them is a simple multiplyer and v/core adjustment. If u mainly game then id suggest the 2500k.
  3. TRWOV

    TRWOV

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    The MSRP for FX8150 is $225. If you want to be in AMD's camp you could wait until the retail channel gets stuffed. Or you could go for an FX8120 and overclock to FX8150 speeds and beyond.

    I'd say the 2500K is enough for now unless you have a workload that takes advantage of the extra threads given by the 2600K/2700K.
    Crunching for Team TPU
  4. digibucc

    digibucc

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    imo be loyal to price/performance. i appreciate the underdog status amd has held, but that alone is not enough. don't be loyal to a name when they don't even know you ;)
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  5. Senupe

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    I think the best sweet spot for gaming, video editing, file compression/decompression, nice instructions and value it's the deal Z68 Board with PCIe-3 and a 2500k since you can overclock this guys at ~4.4GHz on air and ~5.0GHz on water cooling (tewaking BaseCLk and Multiplier).
    That will give you a really shining computer for everthing you need, and even with the posibility to upgrade to Ivy Bridge you'll be able to buy the new i7 set in the future so there's no worry about that, plus the 1155 platform allows you to use QuickSync wich is incredibly fast for video work.
    Hope it helps.
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2011
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  6. Jstn7477

    Jstn7477

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    If you want pretty much guaranteed overclockablility, go with a 2600K. 2500K chips are a mixed bag, some only do 4.3, others can do more. The difference between the 2 is HyperThreading, 2MB L3 cache, and possibly getting a terrible chip, so it's up to you.
    Crunching for Team TPU More than 25k PPD
  7. Steevo

    Steevo

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    I bought my 1100T X6 as it gives almost all the performance on everything that is threaded, and fit right into my board and runs 3.7Ghz/4.1Turbo on stock volts.
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    10 Million points folded for TPU
  8. (FIH) The Don

    (FIH) The Don

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    simple answer, 2600K , no doubt for what you need it for
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  9. NdMk2o1o

    NdMk2o1o

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    I understand your loyalty towards AMD and to be honest your previous builds have all been based on mid range CPU's so I can see why only now you are contemplating switching as you are going for a higher end build.

    If you really want to stick with AMD why not grab a 990fx board and the 1100t as you will still be able to BD should they manage to improve the IPC/per core performance with a newer revision and the Thubans clock well and perform quite well.

    If you go Intel then unless you are going to be a lot of heavily multithreaded work/encoding etc the 2500k is the best bang for the buck by a country mile, the HT and extra 100mhz/cache on the 2600k is not worth the extra $100 or so otherwise.

    Though I haven't said anything more than what you already know yourself so really it is just down to your preference and or budget.
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  10. Wrigleyvillain

    Wrigleyvillain PTFO or GTFO

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    I get rooting for the underdog and all but, yeah, people here are disdainful of Apple fanboys, for example, but AMD is understandable and somehow different and ok? Yes we want AMD to succeed for better competition and the benefits such brings to the consumer and it's cool to be passionate about great products but at the end of the day they are all just corporations most concerned with their bottom line.

    The funniest shit is the giant Nike swoosh stickers I see on the back windows of some cars around the city. Way to provide tacky, free advertising for a company as if it is somehow a personal status symbol.
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  11. newtekie1

    newtekie1 Semi-Retired Folder

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    Nope, no difference. Go for the 2600K and bump the multiplier up one notch yourself.

    Well...not exactly. If you get a 2700K/2600K/2500K(the "K-Series" Processors), then overclocking is as simple as raising the CPU multiplier, because they have an unlocked CPU multiplier. You want 4.0GHz, you set the multiplier to 40, it is that simple. Essentially just like overclocking a Black Edition or FX series processor on AMD's side.

    However, if you don't get a "K-Series" processor. You can't just adjust the BCLK/FSB speed like you can with locked AMD CPUs. While the BCLK is technically unlocked, so you can change it, it controls every clock speed in the system. So raising it also raises PCI-E clock speed, SATA port clock speed, etc. And very bad things start to happen when you start raising clock speeds on things like SATA ports. The non-K-Series processors have a semi-unlocked CPU multiplier. That means you can still overclock them by raising the multiplier, but it is very limited. You can over raise the multiplier 8 notches over the stock multiplier. So if you get a 3.0GHz processor, the multiplier would be 30, so you can only go up to 38 to get 3.8GHz as the maximum clock speed. This is, IMO, where AMD is still superior to Intel if you are building a low cost rig.

    In gaming HyperThreading doesn't really help all that much. However, you mentioned you fold/crunch. The hyperthreading on the 2600K allows you to accept bigadv units when folding, which gives a very substantial points boost. However, they also require that you pretty much fold 24/7 with your CPU. If you don't plan to do that, I wouldn't worry about it.

    Well, I would suggest you do what I did. Go with a 990X board, which is cheaper than a 990FX board, and really all you loose is the x16/x16 slots, but you still get x8/x6 for crossfire/SLi, which is plenty.

    Then as the processor go with a 1090T. I haven't found a think yet that the Phenom x6 doesn't do extremely well. Honestly, I don't really think the FX processors are with it right now, the Phenom X6 performs almost exactly the same as the FX 6 core, so go with the cheaper Phenoms.
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    Crunching for Team TPU 25 Million points folded for TPU
  12. johnspack

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    Yep, go for an i7, you won't regret it. I was as devout to amd as you, since my amd286-20mhz (oced 4mhz!) system all the way up to my athlon64 x2 5600. I now only run intel, and don't feel bad about it one bit!
  13. Neuromancer

    Neuromancer

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    2700K and Z68.

    Currently 2700Ks seemed to be a slightly better revision, allowing farther clocks on less volts.

    Z68 is a great bit of architecture, I found the SRT performing very poorly. However, the AVX encoding for video work is great if you do a lot of reducing HD video to ipod type. If you are transcoding or reducing 1080P input to 720P for archiving, then I would just use the 2600K and handbrake conversion software. More control and just as fast as AVX at that point (1080P to 320P via AVX is 50% faster though!!)

    HD 3000 GFX is good enough for general desktop usage as well even multi monitor. But I would still go discrete GFX for best performance and gaming

    PCIE3 is going to be a boon when Ivy Bridge drops in 4-5 months as well.
  14. TRWOV

    TRWOV

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    2700Ks are still D2; they might be cherry picked but aren't a new revision.

    But yeah, they have the potential to overclock better than the 2600K.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2011
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  15. Neuromancer

    Neuromancer

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    LOL I meant version, but thank you for the correction :)
  16. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    @xvi

    A well thought out question. :)

    You're questioning that loyalty and you should. You should only give your money to the company that gives you the most and today that is Intel.

    I say get a 2700K with a Z68 mobo - just make sure it's a UEFI model. This is what I will be buying shortly.

    The 2700K is supposed to be identical in every way apart from the 2600K apart from the multiplier value that's programmed into it. However, it looks like there might be very small improvements since it's later silicon. I asked just this question in Get the 2600K or the 2700K, that is the question? Have a look at the poll and the responses and see what you think.

    The main differences between a 2500K and the 2600K/2700K are HyperThreading and extra cache. Look up comparative benchmarks and you'll see that the 2600K/2700K are noticeably faster in games. Plus, you can gaze at 8 threads in Task Manager...

    SB with an unlocked multiplier is extremely easy to overclock, as you can just change one multiplier value to achieve it. If you want to gain extra memory bandwidth or find the exact highest frequency it will manage, then of course, more complexity and skill comes into it, but that's the sort of thing us enthusiasts can handle. :D

    Ivy Bridge is gonna be out around March/April, so it's quite a long way away. Also, by the looks of it, it's more optimised for power efficiency and a great IGP, than out and out single thread performance, so unless you really want these things, I'd say don't bother waiting. Also, it will fit into your current S1155 mobo (needs UEFI I believe) so you can always upgrade to it if you want to.

    If you want to get an FX-8150 because it overclocks like a banshee (but doesn't perform...) then feel free to do that too; there's no right or wrong here. erocker started a thread for people that wanted to post about their Bulldozer overclocking exploits. Just remember that whatever you do with a Bulldozer chip, Sandy Bridge is just plain all-round better.
  17. kyussgr New Member

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    Hi,

    First of all, a word of warning about PCI Express 3.0. The Z68 mobos have PCIe 3.0 slots but they don't have a PCIe 3.0 Controller !!!! :eek: (they are PCIe 3.0 capable):D
    The PCIe 3.0 controller will be embedded on the new Intel Ivy Bridge processors which will come out around April 2012. This means that if you buy a Z68 PCIe 3.0 mobo and an i5-2500k or an i7-2600K you will not have support for PCIe 3.0.

    About the loyalty argument.... I respect it, but at this point in time it makes no sense in choosing AMD over INTEL. Intel better and cheaper. Hi-end Intel mobos are much cheaper than the AMD ones and Intel processors are way better than AMD ones.

    If you want (or can:D) wait till around March or April 2012. Christmas is traditionally the worst time to buy future-proof products. All new techs come out at around March - April.

    This is what I am going to do anyway. Got a nice gtx570 in order to play Battlefield 3 and I will stick to my overclocked Core2duo for a few more months...
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  18. qubit

    qubit Overclocked quantum bit

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    @kyussgr

    Great advice and welcome to TPU! :toast:
  19. murdog New Member

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    Sorry if this is a dumb question, but what is 'IGP'? Just learnin all this...
  20. TRWOV

    TRWOV

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    Integrated Graphics Processor
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  21. murdog New Member

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    As in not really needing on-board GPU?
  22. xvi

    xvi

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    X6 Pros: Cheap, price/performance, should sell well when I'm done with it
    X6 Cons: Lack of newer instruction sets, lack of raw performance, mediocre overclock

    FX Pros: Price/performance overclocked, overclock potential, new instruction sets, 8-core, 7-zip performance
    FX Cons: Price/performance stock, power draw overclocked, terrible 8-core implementation

    2500k Pros: Price/performance, overclockability, instruction sets
    2500k Cons: Lack of HT, smaller cache

    2600k Pros: HyperThreading, Instruction sets, increased overclockability
    2600k Cons: Price

    2700k Pros: HyperThreading, Instruction sets, further increased overclockability
    2700k Cons: PRICE, price/performance

    I am currently considering the i7-2600k and the Asus P8Z68-V/GEN3 (unless the non-"GEN3" one is Gen4?)

    Why doesn't Intel have anything between the $370 i7-2700k and the $600 i7-3930k? Are they not worried since AMD has nothing in that segment for them to compete against?

    Threads "feel" important to me. I know the extra threads are just due to HyperThreading, but it seems like it would help in most aspects. Somehow. Magically.
    Some people are saying 5GHz on good air with the higher binned 2700k, but I don't know if that's worth $50-75. I guess it might be considering $200 in water cooling would probably net me a similar marginal increase.

    One thing I don't understand is how the FX has problem with the thread scheduler, but HyperThreading doesn't. Back in the P4 days, HyperThreading would net you about a 30% gain (for 100% more threads). How does Windows know not to schedule two threads on one core for HyperThreading, but not for the FX?

    I've seen the 1090T and 1100T keep up with the FX 8150 in a lot of tests. If I go the X6 route, I'd expect about three times the performance as what I have now. I don't know why, but the X6 just doesn't get me excited for some reason. It did when I first started looking at processors, but it doesn't now. I think it's the new instruction sets. I'm quite interested in AVX, for example.
    About the only favorable long-term thing about the X6 is that it would be one of the best AM3 processors made (as AM3 is about to be end-of-life). In the future, it should sell easily.

    UEFI is one of the reasons why I'd like to upgrade. It's obvious that we're moving in that direction and I'm happy to switch. I'm leaning towards the 2600k just because the 2600k is already stretching over how much I want to spend, but it seems to come out better in value after overclocking.
    I'm no expert, but I'm fairly comfortable with most settings I've run across in the BIOS. While things won't directly translate from AMD to Intel, I'm sure I could pick it up without too much trouble.
    The ability to update to Ivy might be nice. It's certainly helping me justify buying the i7.
    That's the conclusion that I'm starting to come to. As estimated, the 8150 has to fight to stay with the 2600k when overclocked. Even 7-zip performance, where the 8150 does well at stock speeds, only (theoretically) ties the 2600k when overclocked to average levels.

    It sounds like it will be available if you drop in an Ivy Bridge processor later though. Regardless, PCIe 3.0 isn't something I'm too terribly concerned about at the moment. It seems like it would be nice to have (future-proofing), but not a huge requirement to me.
    AMD motherboards seem to top out around $200-250 where as Intel boards can reach up in to the $500 range (X78).
    The reason why I'd like to buy some time about now is that my current computer will be changing owners. I have the option of keeping my motherboard at the expense of buying a new one for the old processor.

    While I overclock nearly everything and having a higher-binned processor sounds quite nice, I'm having a little trouble fitting the 2600k in to my budget as it is. Tough decision.

    I don't want to give up on them though. Even after the Core 2 hit, AMD at least offered an attractive, well rounded processor for the entry-level and mid-range segments. That made sense. The FX just.. doesn't.

    Higher end, yeah. I don't want to go too crazy here.
    I.. I.. I just don't know. I like the new instruction sets, I like the performance per clock.. The X6 is just... old. For $160, it does have terribly good value though.
    Folding, 7-zip, media editing, gaming while recording with FRAPS (the X2 struggles to record anything at 2048x1152).. I'd say I do more multi-threaded work than your average user.
    As I said above, yeah. The extra threads would be nice, even if they're "fake" cores, it's still a performance gain. The performance loss from AMD's FX two-modules-per-core malarkey basically seems to.. just.. I don't know. It makes it feel more like a quad-core with HyperThreading more than a true 8-core. It seems that the i7 benefits from HyperThreading about as much as the FX benefits from the extra modules.
    I'm a sucker for technical specs. The 2600k sounds better and better the more I look in to it.
    It does. The ability to upgrade to Ivy is comforting. I hear QuickSync is buggy if used with dedicated graphics (how could it be that hard to switch between the two?), but the multimedia feature I'm excited about is AVX. I would very much like to move to water cooling in the future and I feel that the i7 would have the most "potential" to unlock. The FX would too, I suppose, but the wattage it would demand is just way too insane.
    To quote Metalica, sad but true. Price/performance, AMD still does well (especially the X6), but I need to find the balance between value and raw performance.
    I noticed that. MSRP on the FX is lower than what's out there. I'm hoping Intel prices will drop when the 8150 does. The buy-in for Intel is a bit steep, imo. It looks like the 8150 dropped $10 on Dec 11. We're getting there.

    It's hard to see the "fair price" part when you're coming from $120-160 AMD processors, but when you lay it out on the spreadsheet, the performance is there. It's still a relatively big pill to swallow.

    I was looking forward to experimenting with SRT. Some reviews give it favor, some give it scorn. If it doesn't work, I could always try Seagate's Barracuda XT. I mainly transcode (basically) uncompressed FRAPS recordings to equal size (2048x1152) H264 and then edit them, scale to 720p/1080p for YouTube/Photobucket/etc. Additionally, FRAPS does NOT like sharing on a dual-core.

    I very much like to keep my options open, so I'd desire AVX (and other features) even if I don't plan on using it immediately. Intel satisfies this desire well.
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011
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  23. Super XP

    Super XP

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    You should get an award for so many quotes :toast:
    That is wishfull thinking, it seems Intel CPU's are going up.

    I have the FX-8120 clocked at 4.40 GHz with a CPU vCore of 1.375v, and NO it's not sucking back power as everybody likes to claim, though I do admit taking her past the 4.50 GHz mark along a vCore higher than my stable 1.375v, the heat starts pumping out like mad.

    So for me 4.40 GHz and even 4.50-4.60GHz is the sweet spot. That's a wopping 1.30GHz to 1.50GHz speed boost over stock clock :D Also if you just want to stick with 3.60GHz, just up the multi and that's it. No vCore increase, no nothing, easily turn your FX-8120 into a FX-8150.
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011
  24. phanbuey

    phanbuey

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    meh... AMD will come back... thing to remember is, processors for gaming (what else do we need a 4.5GHZ CPU for?) are Robin, where as GFX cards are Batman... Maybe in AMD's case they are spider man and Nvidia is the green goblin...

    Either way, processors are the queens and the GFX cards the prime ministers... they are the whip cream to the banans...

    I think the BD is a step in the right direction, they are taking the ATI approach to processors IMO... more cores, simpler cores (a reduced complexity core - a RISC to CISC approach) but massive potential.

    Dont forget that before the 4870, 5870 and the 6970 there was the 2900XT. That was by all accounts an epic fail, and in some cases the 1950XTX beat it, an older gen, while consuming less power. But now, Nvidia is releasing Kepler in maybe 2012 and AMD is already shrinkwrapping the pallets of the 7xxx series to slap some 580 around.

    AMD is down, but its definitely not out IMO.
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011
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  25. xvi

    xvi

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    Did someone say ATI Radeon HD 2900 XT?
    [​IMG]

    It's sitting on my geek shelf. Memory artifacts when run.

    Oh, I agree. I think all AMD needs to do is learn from this experience and refine the FX (FX II?). It's the Phenom all over again (only worse this time). The potential is there, but hopes and dreams don't fold proteins.

    Edit: Sorry, phanbuey! I highlighted it, pressed "Quote" and it autofilled out to newtekie. :eek:
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011
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